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Board of directors

Robier A. Acebo - CBN Techonologies, LLC | President:

Robier was born in Havana, Cuba. When he was seven years old, some friends of his family helped to facilitate his entry into the United States, and he landed in he Miami airport in May of 1989. Through a long process of events, he arrived in Buford, Georgia in 1996. It was a culture shock, to say the least, but eventually the lights of Miami dimmed and the slower pace of Buford became normal to this young man left alone in the world. It was rough at first, and he had to live in his vehicle for about four months, but eventually Robier saved enough money from his grocery store job to start renting a small home in the area. Around this time he joined a local church assembly, and with the help of this new church family, he began a turnaround in his life.

He attributes his success in life to both God and the selfless people who have invested in him through the years. He started a new job, and began to work his way up the ladder in a small pest control company, always keeping the goal to begin his own service company down the road. But when he broke his leg in 2004 that goal changed, and Robier started to focus on Information Technology (IT). He accepted a new job, and worked his way up to a dual role as Executive Assistant to the Owner and IT Manager at a thriving company. He was able to gain knowledge not only through Gwinnett Tech, but also through his work experience. He became proficient in designing, installing, and managing a complex network of remote and local offices and users. Due to the poor economy in 2012-2013, and much to his superiors' reluctance, his position at this company had to be dissolved.

In September of 2013, out of necessity and being tired of hearing "You're overqualified!" after interviews, Robier launched CBN Technologies. The main purpose of this new venture was to help small businesses with IT needs. Needless to say, there was a high demand for this type of service, and Robier's expertise and rapport with his customers began to expand his business into a thriving enterprise. The company continues to grow each year, and as it does, Robier is growing with it in both experience and proficiency. One of the many things that he has learned through the years is to develop relationships. This has been key to the growth of his business.

His philosophy is, "It's not what someone can do for you, it's what you can do for someone else." With this type of winning attitude, Robier has proven to be a great asset to all that partner with him.


Lori Waters Ricci - Ciana Synergy | Vice-President:

Lori is a 5th generation native of the Buford/Sugar Hill area in Georgia, Brenau University Alumni and a certified American Lighting Association Lighting Specialist. Lori is the president and owner of Ciana Synergy LC Lighting Design and Supply.  She specializes in lighting layout, selection, and design services.  Lori comes from a long line of those in the building industry dating back to the late 1800's in downtown Buford. She has been in and around the jobsite her entire life, as well as the lighting industry since 1995.  She has worked in the lighting industry for over fifteen years and now is president and owner of her own lighting and design company. Lori is also the Vice President of Buford Business Alliance and spent many years serving in special education at Sugar Hill Elementary.  Lori is the daughter of Steve and Catherine Waters, retired former owners of W&W Contractors Buford, wife of Joseph Ricci of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers 613 Atlanta, and mother of Adam 16, Conner 14 and Gavin 9. Lori is a visionary, she has a creative sense of design and a mastery of negotiation and business strategy.  These along with her work ethic, networking acumen, and compassionate heart have made Lori a community front runner, a progressive business woman and entrepreneur.  


Linda Gober - LDG Accounting Services | Treasurer:

I’ve spent 20 years working with various organizations from 1 person operations to companies with over 500 employees.  I pride myself on my attention to detail and dedication to seeing people succeed. I do this by providing information in a format that is easily understood and useful. Some examples of my work include:

· I successfully merged newly acquired companies into existing financial systems. This included creating new accounting procedures when the company had an increase of 45% in annual revenue.

· I completed a complete HR overhaul, which included creating job descriptions, creating employee handbook, benefits administration (including ACA regulation compliance) and 401K administration.

· I created systems from scratch that would insure inventory counts were done in an accurate and timely fashion. These systems were made scalable and I later used them during a large scale event that generated $1,000,000 in retail operations over a four-day period.

Companies that entrust their accounting needs to me can feel confident that their expectations will not only be met, they will also be exceeded. I have phenomenal accounting prowess, and in addition, I have plenty of business acumen as well. I know it’s not all about the “numbers”, although getting those right is a great first step!


Heather Pace - The Bean Tap | Membership Chair:

I was born and raised in Georgia. I spent many years working various jobs trying to figure out what it was that made me the happiest. At the age of 27 I packed by bags and left my family and friends behind and moved to Seattle, Wa. It was time to grow up and find a career path. In 1998 I found a little coffee company named Starbucks and immediately fell in love with the small coffee shop feel. It was all about community and family and that reminded me of back home. I spent the next 10 years managing stores across Washington and even in Maryland for a short period of time. In 2011 after missing my family more and more and that good ole Southern Hospitality I moved back home to Georgia. I spent 5 more years managing a Barnes and Noble Starbucks Cafe until I noticed I did not love it anymore. The small community and family coffee house feel had been replaced with fast paced drive thru locations everywhere. So I decided to make the leap of faith and open my own coffee shop. We opened Memorial Day weekend in 2016 and have quickly become a place where families come to enjoy good food and drinks as well as get involved with volunteering and giving back to the community. We hope to see you and your family soon!


Freda Kalina - Virtual Properties Realty | Secretary:

Freda Kalina has been a realtor for 35 years with Virtual Properties Realty. She specializes in residential properties including lake homes,  luxury homes, first time homes and short sales!  She is the mom of 3 adult sons and 2 are also in real estate!  She lives on lake Lanier and loves selling lake property. 

770-596-8178 - www.suwaneehomesandliving.com

Rob Drake
Member At Large
ACG Solutions

Jim Bartow
Member At Large
Window Cleaning Solutions

Carlos Negron
Member At Large
The Sweet Batter

Sammy Baker
Member At Large
Contractors Best Pest Control


The Buford Business Alliance is a non-profit organization created to promote goodwill, business and tourism to benefit local businesses, The City of Buford and the community in the Buford area.

Copyright © 2018 Buford Business Alliance



Buford Business Alliance
PO Box 1796
Buford, GA 30519


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